I was taking the train home when I saw him.
After a particularly drunk Drunk Brunch, I waited for the A train at 59th St Columbus Circle. It was hot as fuck: I was sweating through my Andrew Christian jockstrap, wishing I had one of those big dramatic fans.
I took one of the last seats available, and someone walked past me. Pale and tall, he had a great ass and silver-dyed hair, like he was trying to be Tan France from “Queer Eye.”
I don’t know what drew me to him, but my gaze followed him as he walked to the other side of the train and stood by the doors. When he turned, I recognized him immediately: It was A.
I wrote about A before: We were friends, best friends, but I was in love with him and hid it. After a few years, we grew apart, he blocked me on Instagram after and we haven’t spoken in two years.
But I have thought about him.
I couldn’t stop staring at him, eyes burning a hole in his skull. I wanted him to feel me staring, to look over at me. Maybe he’d already recognized me when he walked by; I couldn’t be sure.
What would I do if he looked over at me? Would I smile? Would I wave? Would I quickly look away in embarrassment?
Looking at him, his familiar body, his familiar face, the new hair… our whole friendship flashed before my eyes. All the nights we watched movies and he fell asleep in my bed. All the bottles of wine (which we always finished). We watched every episode of “Downton Abbey” together. We watched all of “American Horror Story: Coven” together.
A lot of history—and now that he won’t talk to me, that’s all that we are. History.
I wanted to stand up and go over to him. I wanted to tell him that he looked great, to ask him what he’s been up to the last two years. I wanted to tell him that I missed him, that I missed being his friend.
I did not get that opportunity: He got off the train at 145th, and I stayed on, wondering what if.
Two stops later, still buzzed from brunch, I realized I was on the D train, not the A train—and I was in the Bronx. It took me an additional 40 minutes to get home, an additional 40 minutes to think about my missed opportunity.
When I got home, I looked up an old photo of us in my phone: New Year’s Eve 2014. A bittersweet smile crept across my face, and I thought about texting him. Instead, I put on “Downton Abbey” and fell asleep.